BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!

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We have a little surprise for you guys today after we told you that the phone dummies arrived in T-Mobile stores today.  I told you some good news was coming soon, and I try not to disappoint.  What I have for you is the BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 in the form of tons of great pictures, specs, screen shots, and a quick hands on video(the video was kinda impromptu on my Bold so it’s not very clear and I muted the audio)!!!  This will be your one stop shop for Pearl Flip info.  With this being so close to release(October 15th as T-Mobile reps inform us) we thought we would get you some fun stuff to read about if you are sick of all the Storm news.  After the link is a gallery of images of the Pearl Flip 8220 screen shots, a live phone which is black, and a dummy that is red.

So here we go people, this is my thoughts on the BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220.  There is a full list of specs at the end if you are curious.

img 0004psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!img 0016psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!

I will begin with the design.  When the phone is closed it is a model of modern design, I mean this thing is gorgeous.  To be quite honest, when I first heard the idea of a BlackBerry flip phone, I was very skeptical.  I thought that where BlackBerry’s today couldn’t be turned into a flip phone design.  I stand here sit here proven wrong.  So back to the matter at hand.  When I first picked the phone up I noticed how light it was.  Being a huge flip phone and when I say huge, I mean huge, I thought it would be heavy like my old 8820.  The fact that it is so light makes it seem smaller than it is.  When you open the phone it expands its wings and becomes a very long device.  Now the interesting thing about the design of the expanded phone is that the shape does not quite fit the side of your face.  I know what you’re thinking, so? who holds their phone flat to their face?  Well yes but I still think that it is a small design flaw.  The external screen which is a Hi Res 128 x 160 screen shows the BlackBerry clock, incoming calls, messages etc., all the basic stuff.  The real hottness is when the screen fades away and you are left with a sleek black fascia with a nice silver bezel.

img 0010psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!img 0015psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!img 0017psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!

Now on to the rest of the aesthetics.  As we see from the left side of the phone, you have the 3.5mm headphone jack, the micro USB charging port(I hate how they used micro USB), and the left convenience key.  I like the convenience key on this phone because it does not have the raised knobs, it is almost flush with the side of the phone so it’s pretty :).  Moving to the right side, from the top we have the volume buttons which again are pretty flush.  Right next to the volume buttons is the Hot Swap slot for your Micro SD card.  This makes it so you don’t have to remove your battery to gain access to your memory card, a feature that is on all the new BlackBerries.  The last part on this side is the right side convenience key which typically accesses the camera.

img 0018psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!img 0019psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!

On to the back, with a nice smooth matte black plastic finish.  The battery cover is thin but seems fairly sturdy.  This particular phone is branded with a T-Mobile logo and the nice BlackBerry logo.  It also sports the new battery cover release that allows you to remove it with one finger and one simple motion which is way better than, the Bold, Curve, Pearl 81xx, 88xx…you get the picture.  The Flip rocks the old C-M2 battery(battery in the Pearl 8100 series) and houses the SIM card right above the battery.

img 0005psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!img 0011psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!

The Pearl Flip sports is a SureType QWERTY keyboard that is much larger than the Pearl 8100 series.  Each button is larger which makes it easier to type.  An odd new design feature is that the keys curve downward towards the middle.  I am not very efficient at SureType so I cannot comment on whether it is faster or not.  One thing that I absolutely do not like is that the menu and back buttons are below the call buttons and for BlackBerry users this can get confusing.  I am use to having them between the call buttons, but I understand that there are space issues in designing a compact device.  The trackball is unfortunately the standard trackball and not the new “Atomic” trackball that the Curve 8900.  It is set deeper into the phone which makes it a little weird to scroll, but it had to be in order for the phone to close.

img 0022psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!img 0013psd BlackBerry Pearl Flip 8220 Review with Hands on Video!

Finally the screen and camera.  The Pearl Flip houses a Hi Res 240 x 320(2.6inches) screen.  I’m sorry, but ha!  So far I love this phone, but the screen is a sad excuse of high resolution.  It runs OS 4.6 but it’s a mini version(well not really but the screen is small).  Everything on screen is smaller, which makes it seem weird but you get use to it.  Everything is pretty standard as far as 4.6 goes except it is noticeably slower.  It has a slower processor compared to its fellow OS 4.6 mate, the Bold, so slower speeds are expected.  There is really no change to the media player, but if you view the video that the software comes with you will notice something.  Well lets compare, when I was first getting acclimated with my Bold and I watched the video of the BMW M3 I was so taken back.  Now when I watched the video on the 8220 I was also taken back, but I had no words…for how terrible the resolution was.  I don’t understand how RIM could make such a revolutionary BlackBerry and not make it top notch.  While we are on the subject, I was also very disappointed by the camera.  It is as good as the first Pearl with its 2 mega pixels, 1600×1200 pixels, but now it is also has video recording capabilities that are as abysmal as the still camera.  Eh that’s all I have to say about that.

To wrap this review up let us recap.  The aesthetic design is brilliant, and it is a light gorgeous phone that I will probably end up buying.  RIM took a lot of consideration in little things such as the convenience buttons being flush that makes it a great phone.  The battery cover release is also another small design feature that is great, now they could have used a new battery instead of the old Pearl battery but ah well.  Now the camera and the screen resolution is lacking but I won’t let that get me down because when it comes down to it, this is a great everyday phone that is easy to use, light in the pocket, smaller than my Bold, 8820, and won’t pocket dial.  Let me be clear.  I am no way saying that this is better than my Bold or 8820, but it is a nice change and that is why I think I’m so drawn to it.  If you have any questions or comments, put them down in the comment section.  Below is a great gallery of photos, screen shots and a complete spec list, so check it all out. If you need to unlock this phone, to use on another network, do it here.

Thanks for enduring,

Thomas

Specs:

Size & Weight

  • Length-3.98″
  • Width-1.97″
  • Depth-0.69″
  • Weight-Approximately 3.6 oz

Features

  • Wireless Email
  • Organizer
  • Browser
  • Phone
  • Camera
  • BlackBerry® Maps
  • Video Recording
  • Wi-Fi®
  • Media Player
  • Corporate Data Access
  • SMS, MMS

Data Input & Navigation

  • TrackBall
  • SureType® QWERTY (keyboard)
  • Keyboard Backlighting

Voice Input / Output

  • Stereoheadset capable
  • 3.5mm Stereo Headset Capable
  • Headset jack
  • Integrated earpiece/ microphone
  • Built-in speakerphone
  • Bluetooth v2.0; headset, hands-free and serial port profiles supported (Bluetooth® technology)

Display

  • Font Size (user selectable)
  • Color Display
  • Backlighting
  • Light sensing screen
  • Internal display: High resolution 240 x 320(2.6inches) pixel color Transmissive TFT LCD
  • External Display: High resolution 128 x 160 pixel color Transmissive TFT LCD

Notification

  • Polyphonic/MIDI ringtones
  • MP3 ringtones
  • Vibrate mode
  • LED indicator

Approximate Battery Life

  • Standby Time-14 days
  • Talk Time-4 hours

Memory

  • Expandable Memory-support for microSD card
  • Flash Memory-128MB

Modem

  • RIM® Wireless Modem
  • Tethered modem capability

Email Integration

  • BlackBerry® Enterprise Server for Microsoft® Exchange
  • BlackBerry® Enterprise Server for IBM® Lotus® Domino®
  • BlackBerry® Enterprise Server for Novell® GroupWise®
  • Integrates with an existing enterprise email account
  • Integrates with existing personal email account
  • Integrates with optional new device account

Device Security

  • Password Protection and Keyboard Locks
  • Support for AES or Triple DES encryption when integrated with BlackBerry® Enterprise Server
  • FIPS 140-2 Validated (FIPS validation)
  • Optional support for S/MIME

Wireless Networks

  • North America: 850 MHz GSM/GPRS networks
  • North America: 1900MHz GSM®/GPRS networks
  • Europe/Asia Pacific: 1800MHz GSM/GPRS networks
  • Europe/Asia Pacific: 900MHz GSM/GPRS networks
  • EDGE networks
  • Wi-Fi: 802.11b/g

To all the Berry Reporter minions that helped make this possible, thank you.

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60 Comments

  1. Wendy says:

    I got this phone 10 days ago and am very unimpressed. Worst reception I’ve had in a phone, it fades in and out, loses calls, and the battery life is short! Voices sound distant and hollow. I am actually thinking of returning it. Some functions are inconvenient, and the flip lid seems shakey. I worry about it eventually breaking. I agree…the feel of the phone once opened is uncomfortable. Not impressed… and I thought I would love it.

  2. Kayla says:

    I got this phone 3 days ago and I am very impressed. I wanted to get away from the flip after the razor first came out and I had the blackberry pearl which was a great phone and then the curve. I am a female and when going out somewhere, didnt really have room to carry my curve if I didnt want to carry a purse in, so this flip phone is perfect. They only downside I have noticed is the battery life. But the phone is great and it has texas holdem on it and I love that game. I think this may be a keeper!

  3. Chad says:

    I recently purchased the pearl flip, and the bold, I have the need for 4 mobile lines so I switch phones on a frequent basis. The flip has a stunning appearance, at first I was impressed, but as time has pushed on the phone has been a tad to slow… The worst thing for me is the quality of video playback no matter what file type, or the initial size or what setting it plays in the center of the screen with no rotation feature and it is so tiny that its more of a joke while showing the phone off, but like the Bold it can playback almost any form of video, i have to say the bold is almost flawless and definatley worth the extra price and bulkiness!!!

  4. karthi says:

    this phone doesnt have a GPS support !!
    but the author has given it?

    regards,
    http://mobiletimes.in

  5. otto gonzalez says:

    i was very exited to get this flip blackberry. I got it about a month ago and i am on the third one because the other two gave problems. i am not comfortable due to the very short life of the battery charge. I also think that it feels like if is going to brake every time i open it. too bad.

  6. Greg Moreau says:

    We’ll probably be returning ours to T*Mobile. Stated battery life is “up to 15 days” but we’re getting NOWHERE CLOSE to that. More like 5 days. Too bad, because it’s kinda cool, but the processor is a bit slow and 5 days of standby time is ludicrous.

  7. jdc says:

    Do you know – where I can purchase the Back of the Blackberry pearl., just the back needs a replacement. Toronto

  8. Nancy says:

    i really like the new flip. i'm a bit older so i enjoy the bigger buttons, it's much easier for me to text and i did not like the push touch screen on the storms. i got mine from gsmallover.com a cpl month ago. great site and great phone. i'll definitely be sticking with blackberry.

  9. Nicole says:

    I love my BB Flip. I think a lot of issues people are having regarding service have to do with their provider – lucky for me, I also love my service provider. Everything works great and it gets the job done.

  10. Shaq says:

    The blackberry flip phone is probably the worse phone I ever bought. The battery life is terrible, accessing something on wifi is ridiculously slow and there always strange bugs in the phone. Sometimes the phone refuses to ring for an incoming call but the external screen freezes showing incoming calls. There is always some java error message cropping up. The list of problems go on and on. Do yourself a favour and don't buy this phone.

  11. magick says:

    Same here I brough mine well over 2 yrs ago and the battery life is HORRIBLE in the monring like at 6 the bat is full but then at noon it onl leaves me with 1 bar & its YELLOW
    bad baterry life but the other features r u but u cna’t really chat on BB cHat idrky
    i’ll give it A 4 & 1/2 out of 10 bad bad bad

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